Drivers have launched a campaign for trade union recognition at Eddie Stobart’s Carlisle, Lillyhall and Penrith depots in Cumbria.

Union Unite has lodged an application with the Central Arbitration Committee, the body responsible for overseeing claims for union recognition, demanding trade union recognition for 140 LGV drivers working for Eddie Stobart at the three depots.

The campaign for union recognition agreement has been fuelled by driver dissatisfaction at the rates of pay at the three depots, where some drivers are paid £8.68 an hour, below the Living Wage Foundation’s recommendation of £8.75.

Unite regional officer Malcolm Carruthers said: “It’s wrong that this well renowned company is paying some of its drivers just £8.68. This is below what the Living Wage Foundation recommends as the minimum people need to get by.

“The recent driving conditions in the cold and ice have been treacherous, yet the professionalism of the drivers isn’t being recognised or rewarded.

“That’s just one of the many reasons why growing numbers of Eddie Stobart drivers are calling for union recognition. It’s time for Eddie Stobart to come in from the cold and listen to its drivers’ demands for full trade union rights.”

Read more:

The union said that while it was just campaigning for recognition at the sites in Cumbria at present, driver interest, which can be registered on its website, could prompt it to open this up wider.

An Eddie Stobart spokeswoman said: “On behalf of Eddie Stobart Logistics, we can confirm that all our drivers across our regions are paid a rate which is above the UK’s national living wage.

“We welcome the support from the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC), and will work collaboratively with them through this process. No further comments will be made until those discussions have taken place.”

In 2015 Eddie Stobart clashed with Unite in a long running dispute concerning 184 HGV drivers pursuing an unfair dismissal claim.

The dispute was finally settled at an employment tribunal hearing in Sheffield. The settlement, the details of which were not made public, was claimed “an historic victory” by Unite.